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Select the Right Data Integration Tools

     Data volume and management needs grow with enterprises. Hand-coded, point-to-point
integration solutions offer little consistency, require constant rework, produce data quality issues,
 and can actually hinder enterprise growth. Yet developers resist working with tools, and getting
  budget approval can be challenging. Many enterprises are unfamiliar with the benefits of data
            integration tools and don’t know where to start when evaluating solutions.

Use this research to get a handle on how you can best integrate diverse source
   data, and which software vendors will help you manage your data.

   This research is designed for…                                This research will help you…
       CIOs and IT managers of medium to                           Develop a data integration (DI) tool
        large firms who have informal Master                         strategy.
        Data Management (MDM) processes.
                                                                    Make the business case for DI tools.
       Enterprises with 2+ major systems
        (e.g. CRM, ERP), a document                                 Compare and select DI tool vendors.
        repository, and an appetite for BI.

       All data integration architectures.

   This is the second set in the Data Integration Agenda Map. Refer to Move from Chaos to a Realistic Data
          Management Strategy for an introduction and upcoming sets on implementation and SaaS.

   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                             2
                                              Executive Summary
              Data integration tools can improve operations, marketing , and customers’ experience.
               Establish the trigger point where these solutions will make sense for your enterprise.

            • Data integration tools typically reduce development times by 60-75% and improve efficiency and
              operational success. If a tool can take one developer off your payroll, it has probably paid for itself.

            • Tools offer data federation, replication, and synchronization, not just ETL.
            • Developing a data integration tool strategy is a function of your information architecture maturity, data
              architecture, features needed and developer staff size.
            • DI as a Service is ideal for the less mature who are ready to give up hand-coding but not point-to-point.

            • Stack tools offer extensive functionality at a price. Those with simpler needs should use third parties.

            • Tool effectiveness is highly vendor-dependent as many tools don’t actually reduce necessary hand-
            • Platform standardization doesn’t lock you in with that vendor for tools; looking elsewhere is often more
            • Choose your solution very carefully as products evaluated offer a tremendous range of functionality and
              target vastly different needs.

            • Prune data before integrating to avoid headaches and automate as much integration as possible.
            • Prioritize integration; start with the mission critical, especially legacy systems.
            • Painting a compelling picture of process ease with tools is the most effective way to convince
              developers that change is good.

            Info-Tech Research Group                                                                               3
The integration space consists of data & process integration as
  well as Middleware. This set focuses on data integration.
     Data Integration                 Process Integration              SOA & Middleware

 ...reflects the convergence of    …is workflow automation for used to connect
 EAI, DI and ETL vendors (see      processes, e.g. online           enterprise apps without
 Glossary in Appendix).            ordering.                        transforming the data.

 …encompasses data                 …emphasizes a top-down           …creates access to data in
 consolidation, federation,        process design approach to a     distributed architectures.
 propagation and access.           greater extent than the other
                                   two, starting from a process      …requires advanced
 …is gaining momentum as           model.                           architecture to achieve
 enterprises move from hand-                                        success.
 coding to tools.                  …allows organizations to
                                   streamline process and
 …prevents silos of                creates opportunity for
 information and enables an        coordinated escalation.
 enterprise-wide view of data.

 Info-Tech        Info-Tech predicts that these distinctions will become increasingly blurred
   Insight       and will become singular integration hubs within the next three to five years.
 Info-Tech Research Group                                                                        4

   You can’t hand-code forever. Understand how DI tools can help.

Understand        Strategize      Evaluate          Select      Implement
                                                                 & Operate


• Hand-coding and point-to-point integration stifle growth.
• DI tools are ready for primetime and address many data management issues.
• Case study: The costs of hand-coding
• Tools save you time, money, and grief.

                  Point-to-point integration stifles growth.
                    Stop hand-coding your own demise.
             Point-to-point data architectures cannot keep up with business growth
           and are mission critical enough that a misstep can sink the entire business.

                        “    If it’s already hand-coded, why rock the boat?
                            - Professional Services Manager, IT Consulting      ”
If you have over a dozen integrations, which are            Tools can ensure your changes don’t lead to
usually undocumented, the wrong change can                  data mismatches.
bring down the entire system.

Rework, quality problems, manual keying,                    Tools eliminate the need to rekey, simplify
endless rewriting, and no metadata are needless             rework, offer quality and metadata as part of
costs and waste hundreds of hours annually.                 the integration development.

Hand-coding is unreliable, costly, and hard to              Implement tools to increase predictability
manage when making information architecture                 and data management maturity.

Simple coding requests frequently spiral into               Automation from tools frees resources from
tedious, never-ending tasks that eat away IT                the cycle of tedious development and re-
time and resources.                                         development.

                   For an introduction to data integration, refer to Info-Tech’s Data
                      Integration 101 and Move from Chaos to a Realistic Data
                                        Management Strategy.
 Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                 6
         Poor data integration disrupts your entire business.
                                           Costs of Poor Data Integration

       Costs                   Customer Experience                         Marketing                    Operations

Hardware Costs                  Customer Churn                         Poor Decision Making         Slow Service Delivery
Software Costs                  Reactive Decisions                     Poor Positioning             Slow Time-to-Market
Operational Costs               Poor Marketing                         Poor Investment              Rigid
Opportunity Costs               Slow Reaction Times                    Strategy                     Labor-intensive

          The cost of tools is a far less significant factor in data
         integration costs than many people and process issues.                            [With hand-coding,] if you lose
                                                                                           one or two key people you

                                                                                           could be out of luck.
                                                                                           -CIO, Construction

                                                                                       “   For hundreds of thousands of
                                                                                           lines you can’t do it by hand.
                                                                                           You’re going to miss
                                                              Source: Telesperience
                                                                                           something. If you use tools it’s
                                                              2010                         doing it all for you and going to

                                                                                           save you hours of work.
                                                                                           -Data Warehouse Manager,
                                                                                           Distribution Services

 Info-Tech     Don’t expect tool adoption to resolve poor business processes. Sort out issues like
   Insight            business requirements and project management methodology first.
  Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                            7
            If you haven’t looked at tools lately, look again.
  Tools offer broad integration functionality rather than ETL* exclusively. This includes data
federation, replication, synchronization, and design that appeals increasingly to business users.

                  The Problems                                                    The Solution

Data is everywhere. Data is found across the                 Data Integration Tools integrate and consolidate all
enterprise in disparate systems and formats (e.g.            data types from internal and external sources into
transactional systems, legacy systems,                       target destinations such as databases, data-marts,
spreadsheets, and flat files).                               data-warehouses, and files.

Proliferation of isolated solutions, as
different teams create custom code for each
integration project. This creates data quality               Contrary to popular belief, these tools are no longer
issues, redundancies and little reusability,                 in their infancy. A lot of tool functionality is now
drastically increasing TCO due to the time and               baked-in. Intuitive user interfaces have made them
effort needed to support multiple tools.                     very easy to use.
Mergers & acquisitions require tools to
combine data from disparate systems to eliminate             Having a handful of tools to achieve your integration
the need to create custom-code to extract data               needs is no longer necessary. They are now
from each system.                                            consolidated and platform based so you can pick the
                                                             stack that’s right for you.
Legacy systems are outdated and difficult to
integrate. Data integration tools have built-in
connectivity capabilities enabling extraction from
                                                           “    For an efficient IT shop the tool is much more

                                                                versatile and much easier to maintain.
many source technologies.
                                                                - Manager of Enterprise Services, Entertainment
                                           *Extract, Transform and Load
               You’re probably integrating anyway, so why not
                use tools to do it cheaper, faster and better?
                 Data integration tools typically reduce development times by 60-75%.

                  Benefits of Tools                                                             Costs Reduced

                                                                     •         Maintaining multiple skill sets and technologies.
   IT      •   Creates consistent approach, simplifying              •         Redevelopment, rework, and integration updates project
               development and debugging.                                      times.
           •   No need to re-code to adapt function of               •         Debugging and exception handling development time.
                                                                     •         Resource ramp-up time.
           •   Manual re-keying not necessary.
                                                                     •         Data mapping and modeling time.
           •   Self-documenting.
           •   Accommodates changes in the architecture.
           •   Knowledge is out of developers heads, not lost                         No matter how you measure it,
               with turnover.
                                                                                       tools improve your process.
           •   On-boards new developers faster.
                                                                                                              Source: Info-Tech Research Group N=52
           •   Create metadata to enable BI
           •   Easier reporting.
           •   Decreased data quality issues.
           •   Shorter timelines and reduced complexity of
               business projects.                                              Mid
           •   Better access to data.

    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                                             9
                                Case Study:
          “Thirty days is great, but how about twenty minutes?”
       Mid-sized insurance firm selecting a data integration tool to decrease business order time.

           Situation                                 Action                           Impact

    Enterprise applications,              Brought in consultants to        Business order times will be
    including are          document the business case       reduced to 20 minutes from 30
    integrated through hand-              for integration tools.           days.
    coding, resulting in high
    development times and effort.         Presented case to                Client Website will be
                                          management and developers,       dramatically more useable.
    Need an FTE to run every              gaining full support.
    integration batch manually.                                            Eliminated one FTE, saving over
                                                                           $200,000 annually.

         Pain Points                          Key Success Factors                The Last Word

“ What I would recommend to
other companies such as ours, if
they’re getting into a project like
                                      “One, having the support of your
                                      management and the board behind
                                        you. That made my job so much
                                                                           “ One of the findings was if we
                                                                           wanted to just keep our company
                                                                            where it is today then we don’t
this, get help immediately vs.          easier, that I know we have that     need to do anything. If you
  trying to figure it out on your     support. And the second was having   want to grow then we have to

                                  ”                                                                        ”
                                            your staff ready for it.               do something.

  own for the first 6-7 months.
     - IT Director, Insurance               - IT Director, Insurance           - IT Director, Insurance

      Info-Tech Research Group                                                                      10
                                   Tools measurably improve efficiency & operational success.

                     Integration success divides into two main statistical factors, but you can skip the heavy math;
                          both success factors are significantly improved when integration tools are adopted.
                                                                                                 N = 63; Source: Info-Tech Research Group

                                                                Development Time
Impact of Data Integration Tools

                                          Efficiency Success

                                                                                         Compared to organizations that hand-
                                                                 MDM Structure
                                                                                          code, organizations that use tools are
                                                                                        10% more successful when it comes
                                                                Process Efficiency
                                                                                          to efficiency of data integration.


                                                               Process Satisfaction

                                                               Solution Satisfaction

                                                                 Code Reusability

                                                                                        Organizations using tools rather than

                                                               Process Predictability   hand-coding for data integration are
                                                                                          11% more successful when it
                                                                  Data Accuracy          comes to operational success.

                                                                Cost Effectiveness

                               Info-Tech Research Group                                                                               11
             If a tool can take one developer off your payroll,
                        it has probably paid for itself.
          Often at six-figure salaries, individual developers cost you more than most tools.

“Our cost is in the six figures annually just
 for the integration point. It’s excessive,
                                                         The cost of licensing a tool could be anywhere
                                                         from zero* to $500,000 depending on the
 there’s no question about it.
 CIO, Construction                                   ”   product and your needs.

                                                         For SMBs, several recommended options are
 Using a tool does not mean firing                       available in the $30-$50,000 range.
 developers. Often developers can be moved to
 other high value assignments where their                This does not include:
 expertise are needed. Whether you choose to cut a       • Implementation costs
 position or reallocate resources is up to you.          • Support - 10-15% of licensing cost
                                                         • Developer training - $2000/developer
 If developers need to be replaced as data               • Purchase of extra application licenses.
 integration resources, cheaper and fewer                • Any new hardware required.
 developers can be introduced, typically at a cost
 savings of $30-$50,000 each.
                                                         *Talend offers a free open-source data
 Look beyond resources; tools offer hard cost            integration tool, though Info-Tech does not
 savings from decreased operational development          recommend that version for enterprise use.
 and maintenance costs.

 Info-Tech            Hard costs won’t always justify tool purchases. Yet aforementioned
Recommends            soft savings from a faster, easier process often validate the decision.
    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                           12

                To build or to buy, that is the question.

Understand       Strategize        Evaluate          Select        Implement
                                                                    & Operate

• Look to your information architecture maturity and data architecture to
  determine if tools will help.
• Determine which features you need.
• Pick your licensing model based on your developer staff size.
• Not ready to give up point-to-point? Try DI as a Service.
• Make the case to get budget approval.
    You’ve heard the pitch, now decide if tools are right for you.
                      Data Integration Tools aren’t for everyone, and within the space
            there are many options for many issues. Determine which, if any, are right for you.

Consideration             Build           Buy                  Based on your answers to a series of questions about
                                                                your environment, the Info-Tech Data Integration
Initial Investment        Lower           Higher
                                                                 Tool Readiness Assessment will recommend an
Operations Cost           Higher          Lower                    appropriate strategy for your organization.
Support &                 In-house IT     Vendor-managed
In-house IT Staff Skill   Requires high   Less required
Data Cleansing            Limited         Often included
Metadata Capture &        Limited         Often included
Impact Analysis
Source-to-Target          Single/Single   Multiple/Multiple,
Connections               only            Multiple/Single,
Data Source Changes       IT effort       Vendor-managed
Complex                   Limited,        Comprehensive,
Transformations           taxing          supports user code
One-Time Integrations     Ideal           Overkill

   Info-Tech         The rest of this set is designed for those looking to buy. For builders,
     Insight           please consult Info-Tech’s Application Development resources.
      Info-Tech Research Group                                                                              14
Four factors govern your data integration tool selection strategy.

                                     Answer..                            So you can..

                                                                           Determine which tools will be
      Information                      How well do you understand
                                                                         comfortable for your current level
      Architecture Maturity            your enterprise’s data flow?
                                                                            or take you to the next one.

                                        Are you using point-to-point      Determine which tools help you
      Data Architecture               integrations or have you moved     develop your architecture, or just
                                                 to a hub?                     make your life easier.

                                         The data integration tool        Determine which tools offer you
      Functionality                    umbrella encompasses many         the ‘need to have’, not the ‘nice to
                                       features. Which do you need?                have’ features.

                                       How many developers will be          Determine which licensing
      Number of Developers               working with the data              models work best for your
                                           integration tools?                      enterprise.

  Info-Tech            Developing a strategy is an art, not a science. Use these factors to
    Insight       direct your selection, but don’t expect any vendor to deliver a silver bullet.
  Info-Tech Research Group                                                                           15
                When you are ready to take a more holistic approach to
                                integration… use tools.
                      DI Tool adoption should be a function of information architecture maturity.
                   If you have Informal or Lite Master Data Management (MDM), tools are for you.

                                      Information Architecture Maturity
              Nothing                         Informal                     Lite                Enterprise
             No MDM processes           Data flow is understood   MDM is part of a BI, DI,   Enterprise data

             or tools are in place.     and documented but no     or EII suite. Data is      modeling – every
             Data integrations          formal system exists.     captured when moving       piece of data is
             are fully point-to-                                  into a BI report or        accounted for in a
             point.                                               warehouse.                 data dictionary.
Next Steps

             Start developing an        Pick an architecture      Use tools to achieve       You are likely already
             understanding of           based on your             application integration    using advanced DI
             your data needs            processing load           before it hits central     tools. Good job!
             before jumping into        bottleneck and select a   hub.
             tools.                     tool to support it.

             Info-Tech       Data Integration is necessary for providing consolidated and accurate data
               Insight    for decision making. Without integration tools, MDM and BI initiatives will fail.
             Info-Tech Research Group                                                                        16
             Look to your data architecture to direct your integration tool
                     needs. Native functionality helps improve it.

        Point-to-Point                    Hub and Spoke                     Federated                     Distributed


             Tightly coupled            Centralized architecture       The data store does not       Uses agents positioned

             connections between        that uses a data store         actually store any data –     between the system and
             software                   (hub) to populate              only rules to direct and      data store to reduce
             applications.              systems (spokes).              coordinate data between       system processing load.
Next Steps

             Start with lighter
             solutions, such as DI          Most tools support all three structures. If you are looking to upgrade to one of
             as a Service options         these structures, tools will enable and simplify this process. The decision to pick a
             to streamline the              hub, rules engine, or intermediaries will depend on where in your system you
             process.                                                    would like process load.

             Info-Tech            Data Integration Tools are not for one type of data architecture.
               Insight      Align your tool selection with your architecture to derive maximum benefit.
             Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                   17
         Determine which data integration features you need.
       Use…                      To…                       When…
                       Migrate/ convert         A source system is renewed or           Selection Tips
Data Migration/
                       data in bulk to a new    because of application
Conversion Tool
                       application.             consolidation.

                       Process data changes     Loading data marts/ warehouses       Most data integration
Batch Integration
                       in bulk at scheduled     and application integration.         tool suites encompass
                       intervals.                                                    all listed features to
                                                                                     varying degrees.
                       Update data in           Requirements necessitate data be
   Real Time
                       multiple systems as it   updated in real time –               Use your feature
Integration Tool
                       is changed.              Operational dashboards, etc..        requirements as a guide
                                                                                     as you develop your data
                       Track data lineage       Transforming/consolidating data      integration tool strategy.
                       (source, history,        from multiple sources into a data
Management Tool
                       transformation).         store, e.g. warehouse or mart.

                       Cleanse and              Cleansing /consolidating within      Purchasing a full suite
Data Quality Tool      consolidate              the same application or as part of   may be more costly in
                       conflicting data.        a transformation routine.            the short term but the
                                                                                     level of support and
                       Create well-formed       Building/revising a data             functionality is
 Data Modeler          data structures that     architecture for an application or   higher than with
                       respect integrity.       enterprise structure.                cheap and easy tools.

      Info-Tech Research Group                                                                         18
                           Use developer team size to
                  pick the licensing model that’s right for you.
              1. Pick the right license                              2. Minimize tool count

Per Developer Licensing                                   Having a handful of tools to achieve your
                                                          integration needs is no longer necessary. They are
  Tools designed for smaller shops typically use per      now consolidated and platform based so you can
  developer licensing. All else equal, these are          pick the stack that’s right for you.
  typically most cost effective for shops with four or
  less integration developers.                            Standardize and consolidate tools to drive down
                                                          costs. Paying for software licenses and support for
                                                          multiple tools is much less cost effective than
Per Processor Licensing
                                                          purchasing a robust tool or suite.
  Stack tools, typically targeting enterprise clients,
  license per processor. Measures of enterprise size      Consider what tools offer in terms of price-to-
  aside, these typically become cost-effective if they    performance. It is better to invest in one
  will be used by more than four integration              flexible tool than purchase several as needed,
  developers.                                             which inflates software costs.

                                                          With market consolidation, a single tool may now be
If up-front costs are too high to make tool use
                                                          used for data integration, migration, data quality,
feasible, don’t give up! Check out DI as a Service.
                                                          and even MDM.

 Info-Tech             Data Integration enables application consolidation through efficient and
   Insight            effective low-effort data migration, dramatically decreasing licensing costs.
     Info-Tech Research Group                                                                           19
                 If you have lighter data integration needs,
             on-premise or off, investigate DI as a Service first.
            DI as a Service (DIaaS) offerings are targeted at less mature customers
                 who are ready to give up hand coding but not point-to-point.
Adopting SaaS introduces the need for integration,             Pick DIaaS if you...
and while custom coding is common and generally
                                                               • Are adopting or other
feasible, it can be very resource intensive and
                                                                 SaaS apps
difficult to scale as SaaS applications multiply and
                                                               • Have Informal MDM process
more point-to-point connections are demanded.
                                                               • Are intimidated by DI Tools
DIaaS, an on-demand offering itself, addresses SaaS            • Operate in a SaaS-friendly industry
integration challenges. It is cloud-based and
designed to work with SaaS offerings, significantly            Concerned about security? Consider...
reducing implementation time and overall costs.                Private Cloud: Host data integration in your
                                                               own intranet for maximum security.
Many DIaaS vendors utilize pricing models designed
to scale from small to large organizations, e.g.               Single Hop Integration: Transfer data directly
providing free development tools and charging                  from your intranet to your SaaS application to
customers on a monthly, per-connection basis,                  minimize bandwidth use.
rather than license a major software package.

“   IT is getting too complex to do everything             “   The security in place [in cloud vendor data
                                                               centers] is definitely 150 times better than
           in house - SaaS makes sense.
               – Vice President, Finance               ”             what I see in my server closet.
                                                                           - IT Director, Insurance                ”
Info-Tech           The future is hybrid, not full SaaS, so choose solutions wisely: an inability to
  Insight          integrate a vendor’s SaaS offering with other data can severely limit its value.
     Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                 20
Getting budget approval is tough. Let the TCO Calculator help.
           Successful data integration initiatives are a source of competitive advantage,
        allowing enterprises to reduce costs, derive insights and out-perform competitors.

In practice, opportunities are missed for tool
adoption because of failure to make the business
case and gain budget approval.

Realizing the business and IT benefits of tools
requires an ability to quantify and justify the
costs of a data integration tool to the CFO or
budget authority.

Money talks. Leverage Info-Tech’s Data
Integration Build vs. Buy TCO Calculator to
demonstrate the value of purchasing a tool.

Input costs associated with both building and
buying to calculate and display five year TCOs     Despite its inherent complexities, data integration
for both scenarios.                                requires business input to drive value. Collaborate with
                                                   business users following budget approval to refine
                                                   business requirements and ensure success.

Info-Tech    The TCO Calculator isn’t your only weapon for gaining budget approval. Leverage
  Insight slides from this set to outline soft costs and benefits to demonstrate the value of tools.
   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                            21

                    Look to the Vendor Landscape to
                  determine who can meet your needs.
Understand        Strategize       Evaluate           Select         Implement
                                                                      & Operate


• Create a list of requirements to guide you into the vendor selection process.
• Evaluate which vendors are right for you.
• Use niche vendors if you have niche needs.

     Features                     Operation                 Architecture                  Support

• Data Migration/             • Recovery of integration   • System Requirements      • Customer Support
  Conversion                    after failure             • Number of connectors     • User Manuals
• Batch Integration           • Exception reporting and   • Stack alignment          • Implementation
• Real Time Integration         notification              • Hosted Integration         Support
• Metadata Management         • Project Repository with   • Intranet Hosting         • Training
• Data Cleaning                 version control                                      • Software Updates
                                                          • Single Hop Integration
• Data Modeling                                           • Middleware               • Performance
                                                            compatibility              Monitoring
                                                                                     • Geographic &
                                                                                       Language Support

  Info-Tech IT is not responsible for determining business needs. Involve business stakeholders
 Recommends   from inception to operation to ensure the integration meets these requirements.

   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                          23
       Data Integration Evaluation Criteria & Weighting Factors
Product Evaluation

                   The solution provides basic
      Features and advanced integration features.                  Features                       Price

                   The five year TCO of the solution is
  Affordability economical.
                   The solution is constructed with a flexible                   Product
  Architecture and functional design.

Vendor Evaluation                                                                Vendor
                   Vendor is profitable, knowledgeable, and will
      Viability be around for the long-term.                         Viability                   Support

                   Vendor offers implementation and ongoing
       Support management support.

                   Vendor is committed to the space and has a        Strategy
       Strategy future product and portfolio roadmap.

    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                     24
              The Info-Tech Data Integration Vendor Landscape

Champions receive high scores for most                                                                   Informatica
evaluation criteria and offer excellent value.
They have a strong market presence and are                                                                SAP
usually the trend setters for the industry.

Competitors strike a strong balance
between product and vendor attributes.                                                                           IBM
                                                           Talend                 Pervasive
They have the potential to become future
industry leaders if they address the missing
links in their offerings.

Emerging players are newer vendors
who are starting to gain a foothold in the
marketplace. They balance product and
vendor attributes, though score lower
relative to market Champions.                                                                  Oracle

Innovators have demonstrated innovative                             DataFlux
product strengths that act as their                                               Microsoft
competitive advantage in appealing to niche
segments of the market.

Industry standard vendors are
established players with very strong vendor
credentials, but with more average product

                  For a complete description of Info-Tech’s Vendor Landscape methodology, see the Appendix.
   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                            25
 Every vendor has its strengths & weaknesses; pick the one that
                       works best for you.
                                                          Product                                                              Vendor
                                  Features                 Price              Architecture             Viability              Support                 Strategy

 Informatica Cloud

  Data Integrator



SAP BusinessObjects
  Data Integrator

  Microsoft SSIS

Information Server
  Data Integrator

   Note: “Harvey Ball” scores are produced by normalizing weighted, raw scores for each category, resulting in relative scores for each
   category. For example, an empty circle does not indicate a zero score; it indicates the lowest score in that category relative to other
   products. Likewise, a solid circle does not indicate a perfect score, but rather the high score in that category relative to the other products.
          Informatica Cloud is a great way to get your feet wet.

      Info-Tech Rating                           Overview
                                                  •   Offers stripped down hosted data integration.
                                                  •   Founded in 1993, launched Informatica Cloud in 2006
        Champion                                  •   Recognized data integration leader.
                                                  •   Informatica Cloud focuses on entry-level data integration
  Employees:     2,024                           Strengths
Headquarters:    Redwood City, CA
    Website:             • Offers single hop integration (routes directly from your
                                                    intranet to your SaaS application).

“   We continue to see demand
    from enterprise accounts
    who need robust cloud
                                                  • Strong usability makes it usable for non-IT users.
                                                  • Support for mobile.
                                                  • Ability to move integration workflows from cloud to on-
    data integration with                           premise version with no redevelopment necessary.
    enterprise apps like Oracle
    and SAP.                                     Challenges
    - Informatica
                                     ”            • Informatica Cloud designed for less technical users; more
                                                    mature or complex data integration needs likely require
                                                    Informatica’s on-premise product to achieve full
                                                  • Price leap from the cloud to enterprise version.

     Info-Tech                 If you’re looking for the efficiencies that tools bring but aren’t ready to
    Recommends             give up point-to-point integration, Informatica Cloud is a great stepping stone.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                       27
                   Pervasive Data Integrator offers impressive
                   price and performance, especially for SMBs.
      Info-Tech Rating                          Overview
                                                 •   Offers data integration with an SMB focus.
                                                 •   Founded in 1994, flagship PSQL launched in 1999.
       Competitor                                •   SaaS offerings include DataSolutions and DataCloud 2.
                                                 •   A third of all new Pervasive signups are SaaS.

  Employees:     230                            Strengths
Headquarters:    Austin, TX
    Website:                   • Offers intranet SaaS (private cloud).
                                                 • Broad offering of connectors, including to cloud and web

“   More than half of our                          applications.
    customers are SMBs. At the                   • Subscription pricing for all products is very affordable.
    same time, large enterprises                 • An MDM integration hub is available for those seeking to
    benefit from the flexibility                   increase MDM maturity.
    and extensibility of the
    Pervasive integration                       Challenges
    –Pervasive                   ”               • Size and stack independence mean they are a potential
                                                   target for takeovers.
                                                 • While more affordable and easier to use, functionality is
                                                   not as robust as offered by some stack-aligned vendors.

     Info-Tech       Pervasive Data Integrator is a strong cloud offering, and one of the cheapest available.
    Recommends       While not as powerful as some offerings out of the box, its add-on library is impressive.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                     28
                           Talend offers no-nonsense functionality
                                   at a competitive price.
      Info-Tech Rating                        Overview
                                                • Founded in 2005, only open source offering recognized as
                                                  a viable integration solution.
        Innovator                               • Originally SMB focus, customers now include AOL,
                                                  Virgin Mobile, and Sony.
                                                • Focused on the operational, non-BI integration space.
  Employees:     200                          Strengths
Headquarters:    Suresnes, France
    Website:                     • Competitive pricing.
                                                • Can connect with hosted or on-premise applications.

 “   Today’s market favors
     companies that offer a
     cost-optimized solution
                                                • Separate MDM tools operate in same development
                                                • Free core development environment is ideal for making
     with a rapid ROI, we are                     the business case or proof of concept.
     developing solutions
     meant to meet and                        Challenges
     exceed those demands.
     –Talend                        ”           • No hosted offering, though connectors for SaaS
                                                  applications are included.
                                                • Functionality is the most basic of the products evaluated.
                                                • Does not offer integration templates.

    Info-Tech         With an Open Core, Talend is ideal when you need to make the DI tool business case
   Recommends            with little or no budget, and offers enterprise usability extensions from there.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                    29
DataFlux offers a strong data management suite and focuses less
                on the pure integration market.
      Info-Tech Rating                           Overview
                                                   • Offers cleansing, quality, integration, and MDM
   Emerging Player                                 • Founded in 1997, acquired by SAS in 2000.
                                                   • Focus on data management and integration for
                                                     enterprises with compliance needs.
  Employees:     150 (11,000 at SAS)             Strengths
Headquarters:    Cary, NC
    Website:                      • An integrated Data Management Studio provides
                                                     extensive functionality if/when desired.
                                                   • Offers DataFlux Connect for SAP solutions.

                                                   • Impressive built-in data quality functionality.
     Having this big corporate                     • Functionality for every phase of MDM maturity.
     parent allows us to sell                      • Caters to industries with stronger compliance needs.
     the right technology at
     the right time.
     -DataFlux                         ”         Challenges
                                                   • While data management and governance functionality is
                                                     strong, integration tools are less robust.
                                                   • Data integration is strategically not DataFlux’s core
                                                     competency though this may change in the future.
                                                   • Not for those who are BI focused.

    Info-Tech              If you’re looking for broad data management functionality, Data Flux has got it,
   Recommends                   though it is not designed for enterprises seeking data integration only.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                      30
                IBM InfoSphere Information Server is a very strong
                       and increasingly affordable product.
      Info-Tech Rating                         Overview
                                                • Offers data integration as a subset of the InfoSphere
                                                  product line.
      Innovator                                 • Started offering in 2006, many acquisitions since then.
                                                • Historically focused on large enterprise, but currently
                                                  moving downstream.
  Employees:     400,000                       Strengths
Headquarters:    Armonk, NY
    Website:                        •   Very strong functionality and architecture.
                                                •   Shared parallel processing engine.

                                                •   SaaS offering through Amazon EC2.
    We combine data quality                     •   Metadata capture is very impressive.
    on an integration                           •   Viable on a project basis by renting service or using fixed
    platform along with all                         term contracting.
    the features our
    customers are asking for.
    –IBM                          ”            Challenges
                                                • While price point is becoming increasingly reasonable for
                                                  SMBs, it is still significantly more expensive than
                                                  independent offerings.

    Info-Tech     IBM’s price point makes it a tough sell for SMBs. But if you can stomach it, IBM offers great
   Recommends        integration functionality as well as impressive extensibility into other data domains.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                      31
                    SAP BusinessObjects Data Integrator is a
                 practical, manageable tool for SAP enterprises.
      Info-Tech Rating                           Overview
                                                  • Offers no-nonsense enterprise level data integration.
                                                  • Founded in 1990, acquired by SAP in 2007.
        Champion                                  • Focuses on all data sources, not strictly applications.

  Employees:     47,578                          Strengths
Headquarters:    Walldorf, Germany
    Website:                          • Strong support for unstructured data, including text files
                                                    in 32 languages.

“ You can significantly
  simplify and reduce your IT
  efforts with a single intuitive
                                                  • Fully integrated data quality manager.
                                                  • Impressive ease of use, though still ideal for IT rather
                                                    than business users.
  development environment
  that handles all tasks
  associated with building an                    Challenges
  ETL or data quality process.
  -SAP BusinessObjects               ”            • Despite strong offering, it is an enterprise-level solution
                                                    and likely too comprehensive and costly for smaller shops
                                                    with less mature integration needs.
                                                  • Likely not a viable choice for those who aren’t already
                                                    aligned on a SAP stack.

     Info-Tech         Unlike some other large data integration vendors, BusinessObjects DataIntegrator
    Recommends       isn’t overkill. It’s an accessible solution which offers functionality you will actually use.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                         32
        Microsoft SSIS is a no-brainer for SQL Server users.
   It may not reduce hand-coding but will allow you to do more.
      Info-Tech Rating                           Overview
                                                  • Offers enterprise-level data integration and
                                                    transformation for SQL Server users.
   Emerging Player                                • SQL Server feature since 7.0 (1998).
                                                  • Focuses inherently on BI functionality and users.

  Employees:     89,000                          Strengths
Headquarters:    Redmond, WA
    Website:                    • Included with those who own SQL Server.
                                                  • Very strong BI functionality, particularly for populating
                                                    Data Warehouses and Data Marts.

 “   We have one of the
     strongest development
     ecosystems of any data
                                                  • A programmable object model lets developers write hosts
                                                    for packages and their execution.
                                                  • Strong future roadmap to address product gaps.

     integration solution.
     –Microsoft                                  Challenges
                                                  • If you aren’t presently using SQL Server, this option is
                                                  • Weak metadata and data quality functionality.
                                                  • Often does not significantly reduce the need for hand
                                                    coding but instead diverts it to more advanced
                                                    functionality .

    Info-Tech               For SQL Server owners, SSIS is free, making it a no-brainer. For hand coders
   Recommends              simply trying to make their life easier, SSIS cannot presently be recommended.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                       33
            Oracle Data Integrator is a comprehensive solution.
                       If you have an Oracle stack.
      Info-Tech Rating                          Overview
                                                 • Offers a comprehensive solution to everything data
                                                   integration (incl. migration, BI, SOA, etc..).
       Competitor                                • Originally Sunopsis, purchased by Oracle in 2006.
                                                 • Focuses on enterprise-scale deployments.

  Employees:     105,000                        Strengths
Headquarters:    Redwood Shores, CA
    Website:                      • Template-driven deployment.
                                                 • Advanced debugging and diagnoses, e.g.: error
                                                   management, simulation, and session control.

 “   [Our product] is a
     comprehensive data
     integration platform that
                                                 • Full integration with the Oracle technology stack.
                                                 • Master repository, with several separated environments
                                                   for models, projects and scenario execution.
     covers all data integration
     –Oracle                                     • Squarely an enterprise-level solution and too
                                                   comprehensive an option for smaller shops with less
                                                   mature data integration needs.
                                                 • Likely not a viable choice for those who aren’t already
                                                   aligned on an Oracle stack.

    Info-Tech           Oracle Data Integrator offers a ton of functionality for Oracle-aligned enterprises
   Recommends        that can afford it. It will appeal to those with the most complex data integration needs.
Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                     34
    That’s not all, folks! Niche players may satisfy your needs.
 Market consolidation means vendors are moving toward holistic data integration platforms.
Nice players have lighter offerings with narrower functionality (particularly for data migration).

 Info-Tech defines niche vendors as companies

 that provide single functionality solutions, single
 industry solutions, or solutions that function as
 an add-on to other packaged software.

 Migration/Conversion vendors provide this
 functionality only and often charge by record.

 ETL vendors provide core
 extract/transform/load functionality without the
 advanced features of modern integration tools.

 Data Quality vendors allow you to address

                                                       Data Quality
 data quality issues (invalid, stale or duplicate
 data, duplication and conflicts) without delving
 into data integration.

                                                                          This is not a complete list of vendors.
                                                                      Info-Tech does not endorse any vendor listed.

Info-Tech   There are hundreds of niche vendors, with many appearing and disappearing daily.
  Insight     Check the track record of any niche vendor before trusting your data to them.
   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                   35

                Align vendor offerings with your needs.

Understand        Strategize       Evaluate          Select         Implement
                                                                     & Operate


• Look to common scenarios for Info-Tech’s recommendations.
• Identify potential solutions providers with the Vendor Shortlist Tool
• Focus requirements with the RFP Proposal Template
• Rate vendor responses with the RFP Scoring Tool
• Take charge of demonstrations with the Vendor Demo Script
     That’s a lot of information… but what do you really need?
                              Check stack tools first if you rely heavily on a particular stack. They have domain
                              knowledge and the ability to generate data code automatically (e.g. SAP ABAP code or
Stack or Third Party?
                              Oracle flexfields). However, if these tools seem like overkill, cheaper third party
                              are a viable alternative.

                              Though real-time and online integration is supplanting batch-oriented, this is not
Real-time or Batch?           always appropriate and can significantly increase costs and bog down performance.
                              Unless up-to-date real-time data will drive business value, batch integration
                              remains entirely appropriate.

                              More advanced tools may provide parallel processing and workload balancing. Both
How do I address
                              are useful for enterprises with large data volumes and overcome performance
huge data flow?
                              issues stemming from bottlenecks in peak frequency times.

                              Don’t overlook data quality; it is key to data integration success, as integrating
What about Data               bad data is ineffective. Many offerings include this functionality directly or through a
Quality?                      third party extension; in most cases the difference is negligible. Keep in mind the ratio
                              of cost-to-effectiveness, as 100% accuracy is rarely worth the investment.

                              Impact analysis (i.e. tracing the impact of source data changes on reports or analysis)
What’s Impact                 requires metadata integration and data lineage and allows for development of ‘what-if’
Analysis?                     scenarios. This functionality is recommended for enterprises with complex
                              integration architectures. (e.g. a target field is derived from multiple source fields).

                              Debugging environments, often included, are useful for error-checking when
When do I Debug?
                              developing integrations, especially if staffing less experienced developers.

   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                    37
                        Not all vendors are created equal.
                         Pick the right one for your case.
                               Effectiveness is highly vendor dependent.

While tool satisfaction is uniformly above hand-
coding, it ranges dramatically across stack

Reduction in hand-coding is also variable, with
some tools failing to provide a significant
reduction at all.

                   I want…                                     Info-Tech Recommends
To reduce hand-coding without abandoning           Informatica Cloud
To get tools as cheaply as possible.               Talend, Informative Cloud, Pervasive Data Integrator
Stick with a stack vendor.                         BusinessObjects Data Integrator, Oracle Data
                                                   Integrator, IBM Information Server, Microsoft SSIS
Integration with a comprehensive data              DataFlux
management platform.
To try before I buy to help make the business      Talend
To improve my SQL Server data integration.         Microsoft SSIS
             Identify leading solution candidates with the
                Data Integration Tool Vendor Shortlist.
        The Info-Tech Data Integration Tool Vendor Shortlist is designed to
         generate a customized shortlist of vendors based on key priorities.

This tool offers the ability to modify:
  • Overall Vendor vs. Product
  • Vendor criteria weightings (e.g.
      vendor viability, support,
      strategic orientation)
  • Product criteria weightings
      (e.g. features, architecture,

Use this tool at an early stage of
analysis to identify vendors that will
best meet business requirements.

Info-Tech Research Group                                                       39
                     Focus solution requirements with the
                    Data Integration Solution RFP Template.

  Issuing RFPs is a critical step in your
  vendor selection process.

  The Info-Tech Data Integration
  Solution RFP Template comes
  populated with important elements you
  don’t want to forget. These include:
    • The Statement of Work
    • Proposal Preparation Instructions
    • Scope of Work
    • Specification & Requirements
    • Vendor Qualifications &
    • Budget & Estimated Pricing
    • Vendor Certification

Info-Tech                       An RFP implies stable requirements and an intent to buy –
  Insight                     use this tool to help select a supplier, not to develop a shortlist.

   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                          40
              Put hard numbers behind vendor claims &
         keep evaluations objective by scoring RFP responses.
           A standard and transparent process for scoring individual vendor
         RFP responses will help ensure that internal team biases are minimized.

 The Info-Tech Data Integration Solution
 Evaluation & RFP Response Tool comes
 pre-built with important scoring criteria
 for vendor RFP responses.
 This tool includes modifiable criteria
 across the following categories:
   • Features (e.g. real-time integration)
   • Operational Requirements (e.g.
       debugging, exception reporting)
   • Architecture (e.g. hosted
       deployment, connector volume)
   • Support
 Adjust the individual category weightings to
  customize this tool to business priorities.

Info-Tech    Pricing information distracts reviewers from evaluating business and technology
  Insight    requirements. Consider withholding it until after evaluation of functional criteria.
   Info-Tech Research Group                                                                     41
             Take charge of vendor finalist demonstrations
                 with a Vendor Demonstration Script.
   An on-site product demonstration will help enterprise decision-makers better
         understand the capabilities and constraints of various solutions.

The Info-Tech Data Integration Vendor
Demonstration Script is designed to provide
vendors with a consistent set of instructions for
key scenarios.
This template includes examples for the
following scenarios:
     • Planning and Deployment
     • Meeting Setup and Operation
     • Software Installation
     • Initial Configuration
     • Diagnose/Repair/Uninstall
Modify this demo script template to fit your
individual needs and requirements.

 Info-Tech Research Group                                                     42

Take pre-emptive steps to set yourself up for data integration success.

 Understand       Strategize       Evaluate        Select         Implement
                                                                   & Operate


• Determine how you’ll integrate to prepare for implementation.
• Get a handle on your implementation and operation timeline.
• Avoid DIaaS and SaaS pitfalls.
• Highlight process improvement to quell developer resistance.
       Prepare for implementation to ensure a smooth process.
              Manage the Technology                               Don’t forget People and Processes

1     Flexibility is king.
    Where possible, reduce future costs by selecting a
    tool that is reusable and replace other single-
                                                           Integration size, complexity, and available
                                                            internal staff determine consulting need.

    function tools to minimize licensing and support.        For straightforward implementations, most
    Consider present and future needs.                       enterprises should be able to proceed with their own
                                                             staff or resources provided by their selected vendor

2     When possible, automate.
    The closer your tool aligns with your desired
                                                             or channel partners.

                                                             Complex, large scale integrations, or enterprises
    functionality, the less hand-coding you will have        with very limited IT staff may benefit from
    to do, so capturing precise technical requirements       introducing consultants as soon as possible.
    is critical. Properly chosen, data integration tools
    are flexible and can lend themselves to complex
    integration scenarios.
                                                             The goal of any data integration tool should be to

                                                             make source data systems plug n’ play. Keep
      Prune data first.                                      this in mind when developing your implementation
    Storing duplicate and unneeded data is                   process, as processes that don’t enable this will
    expensive; the cost to integrate or migrate it is        require on-going management, limiting cost and
    worse. Remove this data before integration to            time savings, and causing additional grief .
    drive down costs and the timeframe.

Info-Tech         For an in-depth guide to implementation, please see Info-Tech’s forthcoming
Research              Implement Data Integration Tools solution set to be released in 2011.
    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                               44
               Your timeline length depends on your integration,
                          but the steps are the same.
                     Implement                                                    Operate

  If you are purchasing new hardware systems in              Prioritize integrations.
  conjunction with your tool, begin by mapping
  and connecting the new physical infrastructure             Start automating crucial integrations that are
  before worrying about the tools themselves.                deemed mission critical to the business. If you are
                                                             using legacy systems, start there, as these
  Tools that will run on existing software typically         integrations are in most urgent need of replacing.
  feature straightforward installations for the agent
  and demonstration environment.                             Updating other lower priority integration points
                                                             should be undertaken as a subsequent phase.
Start Integrating Data with a 5 Step Process:
        Implement                  Create               Automate             Test
    1   Quality Control        2   Connections     3    Integrations    4    Procedures        5   Execute

Plan accordingly: More complex integrations will have a lower reduction in development time.

                Hand-coded Integration: 8 weeks                             Hand-coded Integration: 24 weeks
 Simple                                                      Complex
                With Tools: 8 days – 80% reduction                          With Tools: 9 weeks – 62% reduction

   Info-Tech     Vendors setup takes between 1 day and 1 month depending on your environment.
     Insight    Ensure you are internally prepared for integration or risk taking several times longer.
    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                              45
                     Avoid the pitfalls of using DI as a Service
                        and integrating SaaS applications.
 Know when to create a custom adapter.                Most large SaaS vendors run off a single database
                                                      instance, which, while easier to maintain, presents
 Some enterprises may elect to write their own        customer challenges:
connector to facilitate bulk uploads. There are
two triggers for this scenario:                         It takes time. Moving batches of millions of
                                                        records takes a considerable amount of time.

1   Real-time integration with other
    systems. Some enterprises may require near
    real-time integration with other applications
                                                        Tweak the interface to improve performance.

                                                        Persistent connections are a
    such as ERP, marketing automation, or               must. Negotiating thousands or millions of
    customer service applications.                      individual connections for a batch transfer will
                                                        cripple performance. Use the persistent

2   Excessive scale and complexity. Third-
    party applications for bulk uploads will baulk
    with transfers characterized by:
                                                        connection feature.

                                                        Multiple threads don't help. Starting multiple
        Over 200,000 records.                           sessions to transmit batched data will not help
        Over 1,000 data fields.                         performance due to authentication complications
                                                        and may even slow down performance.
Overcoming negative SaaS perceptions is still
an issue. When surveyed, 61% of Info-Tech               Lock out unnecessary features. During batch
respondents believed SaaS to be more difficult          updates some usability features will constantly
to integrate than on-premise applications.              update, leading to poor performance.

  Info-Tech      Use consulting help if needed. SaaS vendors offer professional services to assist
    Insight      with data transfer which may be helpful for more complex integration projects.
    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                          46
 Expect developer resistance and overcome it through dialog.

        Developers gonna develop.                                       Tools are friendly.
The market is moving away from custom coding and          Managers don’t train developers on data
many stubborn developers are holding                      integration tools. Address resistance through
organizations back.                                       developer managers.

Tools are strongly resisted by developers who feel        Don’t expect resistance to be demographically
the tools take away control and freedom, yet the          uniform, or even logical, e.g. newer developers
tools are essential for data management maturity.         could expect tools to be in place or fiercely resist
                                                          them, feeling the need to prove themselves
Developers will say the tool isn’t robust enough          through coding.
which comes from insecurity and fear of being
replaced.                                                 Regardless of developer reasoning, the key to
                                                          convincing developers is process: show them how
Programming is a part of the job they like doing so       tools will make their lives easier and they will be
they don’t want to reduce it. They think tools mean       wowed.
they just do data entry.

Yet system mapping and knowledge is more
                                                      I think getting a third party, a second voice
                                                      that they’re not used to hearing all the time,
                                                       saying the same thing in different words,

valuable. They need to expand their thinking of          I think that made a significant impact.
what it means to be a developer.                                   - IT Director, Insurance

 Info-Tech            Seeing is believing. Painting a compelling picture of process ease with
   Insight          tools is the most effective way to convince developers that change is good.
  Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                 47
        At some point data integration tools become required for business growth.
             They improve operations, marketing, and customer experience.

• Tools reduce development times by 60-75% and improve efficiency and operational success.

• If a tool can take one developer off your payroll, it has probably paid for itself.

• Developing a data integration tool strategy is a function of your information architecture
  maturity, data architecture, features needed and developer staff size.

• DI as a Service (DIaaS) offerings are targeted at less mature customers who are ready to
  give up hand coding but not point-to-point.

• Tool effectiveness is highly vendor-dependent as many tools don’t actually reduce necessary

• Prune data before integrating to avoid headaches, and automate as much integration as

• Prioritize integration; start with the mission critical.

• Painting a compelling picture of process ease with tools is the most effective way to
  convince developers that change is good.

    Info-Tech Research Group                                                                   48

Info-Tech Research Group              49

Business Intelligence (BI)   processes and applications that provide a holistic view of business operations that are
                             used to support decision making.
Business Process             the continuous improvement of business processes to align them with customer needs.
Management (BPM)
Data Agility                 the ability of a piece or group of data to be easily manipulated and adapted as needed
Data Architecture            the design of data, systems and tools that support an organization or business function
Enterprise Application       linking applications together through data integration.
Integration (EAI)
Enterprise Information       creating a single interface to view data from more than one source.
Integration (EII)
Extract, Transform and       the process of extracting data from an outside source, transforming it to meet needs
Load (ETL)                   and loading it into the end target.
Legacy System                old hardware or software that is still used and contain valuable data.
Master Data Management       creating a single and inclusive view of data.
Software-as-a-Service        enables a company to rent an application from a vendor that hosts it.
Service-Oriented             the process of building scalable distributed systems that treat all software components
Architecture (SOA)           as services
Data Modeling                is the process of defining and analyzing enterprise data to better manage data and
                             improve business processes.

Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                            50
                               Vendor Landscape Methodology
Info-Tech Research Group’s Vendor Landscape market evaluations are a part of a larger product selection solution set, referred
to as a ‘Select Set.’

The Vendor Landscape evaluation process starts with a customer survey. Customers tell us which vendors and products
they’ve heard of and which ones they use, plan to use or are investigating.

From these survey results and the domain experience of our analysts, a vendor/product shortlist is established. Product
briefings are requested from each of these vendors, asking for information on the company, products, technology, customers,
partners, sales models and pricing.

Our analysts then score each vendor and product across a variety of categories. These scores are then weighted according to
weighting factors that our analysts believe represent the weight that an average client should apply to each criteria. The
weighted scores are then averaged for each of two high level categories: vendor score and product score. A plot of these two
resulting scores is generated to place vendors in one of five categories: Champion, Competitor, Emerging Player, Innovator and
Industry Standard.

Analysts take the individual scores for each vendor/product in each evaluation category and normalize them to a scale of zero
to four. This produces a relative scoring, where a low score value indicates low performance in that category relative to the
performance of the other products in that category and vice versa for a high score. These normalized scores are
represented with “Harvey Balls”, ranging from an open circle for a score of zero and a filled-in circle for a score of four.
Harvey Ball scores do not represent absolute scores, only relative scores.

Individual scorecards are then sent to the vendors for factual review, and to ensure no information is under embargo. We will
make corrections where factual errors exist (e.g. pricing, features, technical specifications). We will consider suggestions
concerning benefits, functional quality, value, etc; however, these suggestions must be validated by feedback from our
customers. We do not accept changes that are not corroborated by actual client experience or wording changes that are
purely part of a vendor’s market messaging or positioning. Any resulting changes to final scores are then made as needed,
before publishing the results to Info-Tech clients.

Vendor Landscapes are refreshed every 12 to 24 months, depending upon the dynamics of each individual market.

  Info-Tech Research Group                                                                                               51

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